Morning Brief, Tuesday, November 21

Middle East Lebanese Minister Pierre Gemayel was killed in Beirut today, and, as Chris points out below, his death may pave the way for a new cabinet – exactly what Hezbollah has been angling for. Anthony Shadid reports for WaPo and describes a country teetering on the edge of political crisis.  In Baghdad, Syria and ...

605942_Gemayel5.jpg
605942_Gemayel5.jpg

Middle East

Lebanese Minister Pierre Gemayel was killed in Beirut today, and, as Chris points out below, his death may pave the way for a new cabinet - exactly what Hezbollah has been angling for. Anthony Shadid reports for WaPo and describes a country teetering on the edge of political crisis

In Baghdad, Syria and Iraq announce a resumption of formal relations after a 20-year hiatus. The Pentagon is considering a spike in U.S. troops in Iraq - perhaps as many as 20,000 - before any withdrawal strategies begin. Here's the story behind the Iraq Study Group.

Middle East

Lebanese Minister Pierre Gemayel was killed in Beirut today, and, as Chris points out below, his death may pave the way for a new cabinet – exactly what Hezbollah has been angling for. Anthony Shadid reports for WaPo and describes a country teetering on the edge of political crisis

In Baghdad, Syria and Iraq announce a resumption of formal relations after a 20-year hiatus. The Pentagon is considering a spike in U.S. troops in Iraq – perhaps as many as 20,000 – before any withdrawal strategies begin. Here’s the story behind the Iraq Study Group.

An Israeli group using Israeli maps claims that more than a third of the land used for settlements in the West Bank actually belongs to Palestinians

Asia

China and India pledge to double trade to $40 billion a year by 2010. 

Bush ends his tour of Asia with a short trip to Indonesia, where even the Indonesian president’s responses were carefully orchestrated:

When a reporter asked [Indonesian President] Yudhoyono whether he had urged Mr. Bush to begin a withdrawal of forces from Iraq, Mr. Bush interjected: “I’ll be glad to answer it for him — no, no he didn’t. But he can answer it for himself”

Beijing could have the world’s longest subway network by 2020.

Elsewhere

Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, the defeated Mexican presidential candidate, swore himself in yesterday and launched a parallel government. His victorious opponent, President-elect Felipe Calderon, names a business-friendly cabinet.

EU leaders give Turkey two weeks to drop trade restrictions on Cyprus or say goodbye to EU membership hopes

A new UNAIDS report: HIV infections are on the rise everywhere

And oil prices rise slightly over fears that OPEC will cut production next month. 

Carolyn O'Hara is a senior editor at Foreign Policy.

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